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Cat INV1250 (Discontinued)

The Cat INV1250 is a quiet, compact and lightweight inverter generator with a rated wattage of 1000 W and a starting wattage of 1250 W.

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This product was discontinued. For your convenience, we decided to leave this page up.
If you were looking to purchase it, you may want to have a look at the Powermate PM1200i, which has similar specs.
You can also try to find it second hand on eBay, by clicking on the button below.

Description

Take your outdoor adventures to the next level with the Cat® INV1250 portable inverter generator. Inverter technology provides a high-quality power that's safe for your sensitive electronics. Cat® CO DEFENSE™Carbon Monoxide Sensing & Shutdown technology keeps you, your family, and friends safe.

Zoom on the Cat INV1250

In a nutshell, the Cat INV1250 is a quiet, compact and lightweight portable inverter generator mostly geared towards:

  • Camping and tailgating hobbyists looking for a portable power source
  • Amateur DIY lovers

In the following paragraphs, we shall explore the power characteristics, available outlets, portability, and any additional features of the device, along with its emission compliance information.

Power & Run Time

The Cat INV1250 in use

The Cat INV1250

The Cat INV1250's core is the 60 cc OHV 4-stroke engine, which runs on gasoline. With an output of 120V, it provides a running wattage of 1000W and a peak wattage of 1250W. In addition, the device is parallel capable (parallel kit not included) and thus, can be linked to a similar or compatible unit for added power.

The inverter generator features a conventional pull-start mechanism. It is rated for a noise of 52 dBA (just slightly more noisy than a quiet suburb).

With a full tank, the INV1250 can operate for around 7.9 hours at 50% load (fuel consumption around 0.1 GPH), thanks to its fuel capacity of 0.8 gallon.

Delicate electronics can be plugged in an AC outlet safely, as the INV1250 generates a clean sine wave, reaching a <3% Total Harmonic Disruption (THD).

Outlets

The control panel provides the upcoming AC outlet:

120V 20A (5-20R) receptacle

Furthermore, it has 2 DC outlets: there's two 5V USB ports with which you may charge electronics, for example mobile phones or tablets, conveniently.

Portability

Since the Cat INV1250 is an inverter generator, its closed design (L18.3 x W11.5 x H16.6 in) has an esthetical advantage over conventional, open frame devices. This type of design is the most modern and convenient way to recreationally generate power.

Weighing just 33.1 lbs, the INV1250 can be considered a lightweight portable generator. A single person should not have any problems moving it around and thus, enjoy power availability on-the-go. This convenience is further enhanced thanks to its handle (molded in the case) that allows you to carry it with ease.

Features

Panel of the Cat INV1250

The INV1250's control panel

The device’s light indicators will display if its oil levels are insufficient, the generator is on overload and the generator is ready. To offer greater control and easy operation during nighttime, the panel is LED-lit.

Thanks to a built-in fuel gauge, the inverter generator allows you to quickly, conveniently and easily check the gas level at a glance.

As for its security measures, the device features an overload protection (circuit breaker) and an automatic low oil shut-off, letting you use it with a peace of mind.

The INV1250 also benefits from CAT’s CO DEFENSE™ carbon monoxide shutdown. This system monitors the accumulation of CO gas while the generator is running and will shut off the engine if the levels become dangerously high. It’s a welcomed additional security feature, but don’t forget to always take your generator outside (opens in a new tab).

While the standard documentation and an owner's manual (opens in a new tab), helpful for starting the device promptly, come with the Cat INV1250, the following accessories are also included: oil, tool kit and funnel.

Emissions

The Cat INV1250 is EPA-approved and CARB-compliant. Thus, selling and purchasing this generator is allowed in each of the 50 states, including California.

Moreover, it features a spark arrestor and thus, may be used in forested areas.

The Cat INV1250 versus other generators

The following charts are provided to give you an idea of how some of the key specs of the Cat INV1250 compare to inverter generators of similar power (between 1000 and 2000 W).

  • As for its weight, the Cat INV1250 weighs only 33.1 pounds, making it one of the lighter inverter generators in the 1000-2000 rated wattage category. Regarding dry weight, one of the champions in the same power range is the Genmax GM1200i, with a dry weight of only 25.3 lbs.
  • Since this inverter generator is rated for a lowest possible noise of 52 dBA, it can be considered as one of the more quiet of the products generating similar power. If you’d prefer a less noisy device, one of the most quiet devices, which share the same power range with this one, is the Honda EU2200i, whose lowest noise levels reach just 48 dBA.
  • With a run time of around 7.9 hours at 50% load, the INV1250 has one of the higher run times, compared to its similarly powerful peers. If you consider autonomy on a single full tank as one of the deciding factors, one of the generators in the same power range that offers the highest run time is the Westinghouse iGen2200, with around 10 hours.
  • Autonomy holds its importance, however, it is largely dependent on the generator’s fuel capacity and so, it is nonsensible to discuss it without mentioning fuel efficiency as well. This inverter generator can be considered as one of the most fuel efficient, due to its low estimated fuel consumption of only 0.1 GPH (gallon per hour) at 50% load, within the aforementioned wattage range.

The bottom line

STRENGTHS:
  • Illuminated control panel
  • CO DEFENSE™ technology
  • Several accessories included
  • Parallel capable
  • Inverter
  • Lightweight (33.1 lbs)
  • Quiet for its power (52 dBA)
  • High run time
  • Fuel efficient
WEAKNESSES:
  • No data center
  • Only 1 AC outlet
  • No electric start

Do you own the Cat INV1250 and agree (or disagree) with these strengths and weaknesses?

Let us know and write your own review.

Features and Specifications

General
InverterYes
PortableYes
Parallel capableYes, cable not included
RV readyNo
FuelGasoline
Engine60 cc OHV 4-stroke
Starting systemRecoil
Power
VoltageAC: 120V 60 Hz, DC: 5V
Running watts1000 W
Starting watts1250 W
Running amps8.3 amps
Peak amps10.4 amps
Run time @50% load7.9 h
Run time @25% loadUnknown
Features
GFCI outletsNo
Covered outletsNo
Automatic Voltage RegulationInverter
AC outlets1x 120V 20A (5-20R)
DC outlets2x 5V USB port
Data centerNo
IndicatorsLow oil, overload and output ready
Fuel tankPlastic, 0.8 gal
Fuel gaugeYes
Misc
Weight33.1 lbs
Approx. dimensions (L x W x H)18.3 x 11.5 x 16.6 in
Noise (lower limit)52 dBA
THD< 3%
ComplianceCARB, EPA
SecurityLow oil and overload protection, CO monitoring
Spark arrestorYes
NeutralBonded to frame
Accessories includedOil, funnel, and tool kit
Warranty3 years
Other model numbers501-5453
UPC815683026632

Unlike many websites, we did our best to research each of the specs above. That being said, we are not immune to making the occasional mistake or omission. Should you notice any missing or incorrect values, don't hesitate to suggest improvements so we can address the issue.

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About Cat

Caterpillar Inc., often abbreviated as simply CAT, is an American engineering corporation, whose product range includes machinery, engines, financial products, mobile phones and of course, power generators. The company, founded in 1925, is one of the backbones of the US Dow Jones index and is placed among the Fortune 500 list. While CAT mainly focuses on industrial scale generators, it also provides a wide range of portable and household-scaled devices. CAT portable generators are engineered and designed in Mossville, Illinois, and Belfast, Northern Ireland. However, their production is outsourced to China.

Warranty Information

The Cat INV1250 is covered under a warranty for up to 3 years. This warranty may be limited and may not cover all parts of the generator.
For more information about the warranty of Cat generators, please consult Cat's warranty policies (opens in a new tab). Alternatively, you can also contact their Customer Support: 1-844-PWR-ME-UP (844-797-6387).

Questions & Answers

What can it power?
Examples of items that can be simultaneously powered.
The examples below are based on a maximum load of 80% and estimated wattages. For a more accurate estimation, use our generator sizer.
ItemRunning WattsStarting Watts
At homeRefrigerator (energy star)1921192
Set of 5 LED light bulbs5555
Total247 W1247 W
For campingRV refrigerator180600
Coffee maker600600
Total780 W1200 W
For workReciprocating saw730960
Total730 W960 W

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